|Where are all the Dogs?|
I let my fingers do the walking at Bing.com and found a surprisingly low 29 dog-friendly beaches in Florida, many of which are fresh water beaches found on lake fronts. That's an average of one beach to every 41 miles of coastline, if you don't tally up the lake fronts in the math. Sad.
And it gets worse. Many of these beaches are called dog-friendly, but their rules state your dog must remain on-leash. That fetch game is going to be pretty lame. Ditto on the swimming and Frisbee.
As I thought back on the movie Milo and Me, I couldn't help but remember that scene where Milo had a bit too much salt water to drink. Okay, so I get the problem. What I don't get is why we can't fix it.
What can we do to get more off-leash beaches for our dogs and us to enjoy a Frisbee game, some Fetch practice, or a good ole romp in the rushing water? We can take responsibility for our dog. That means training, socialization, carrying a poop bag, and learning to be a proper leader, not just a gushy puppy lover who knows nothing about what we're doing.
I know we all mean well. But we have to realize that together, collectively, the owners are the reason for a shortage of dog-friendly venues of all kinds--parks, beaches, hotels, outdoor restaurants , shopping--all the places that we'd like to take Fido, if only we were permitted to.
I get agitated sometimes when I feel my dogs are slighted. There was never a shortage of parks for my children, and they were not nearly as well behaved as my dogs are. Go figure.
Okay, enough ranting from me. Let's get to the resource I sat down to bring you:
Yes, it includes lake front beaches. Yes, it includes beaches that require your dog to be on a leash. But at least there is a resource, and at least there are some beaches where Fido can run free. Find them. Thank the providers. Take responsibility for your dog. You may even have to bring your own poop bag or water. Let's set the example to be emulated all over the country: